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Technology Incubator opens for business
Thursday, July 12, 2007

 Ribbon cutting ceremony at SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator
From left to right:
Tom Barresi of the Chamber of Commerce, adXit Vice President Mike Brennan (2002 graduate), Incubator Project Director Jeffrey Corcoran, State Senator Catharine Young, Mayor Richard Frey, Assemblyman Bill Parment, County Executive Greg Edwards, Assemblyman Joseph Giglio, and SUNY Fredonia President Dennis Hefner cut the ribbon for the temporary home of SUNY Fredonia's technology incubator on Central Avenue in the city of Dunkirk, NY.
Steve Yunghans photo courtesy of Dunkirk Observer

With a ribbon cutting ceremony in downtown Dunkirk, SUNY Fredonia officials are celebrating another step in economic development locally as they open the temporary site of the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator, the first of its kind in Chautauqua County.

State and local elected officials are joining SUNY Fredonia President Dennis L. Hefner in officially opening the incubator today at 11 a.m. in Suite 300 at 314 Central Avenue, and announcing its first tenant, adXit.

The temporary quarters are adjacent to the planned site of the incubator’s permanent location on the vacant Central Avenue block between Second and Third streets.

While the temporary space is approximately 2,500 square feet and can equip five start-up companies, the permanent incubator will be roughly eight times that size—from 18,000 to 22,000 square feet. It will be built to support 15 fledgling companies in addition to support staff.

JCJ Architects of Hartford, CT, have been hired to design the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator. Wendel Duchsherer, Inc., of Amherst is the consulting engineer.

The first small business incubator dedicated to the unique needs of the technology industry in Chautauqua County, the facility is the brainchild of SUNY Fredonia and its Center for Rural Regional Development and Governance.

“By offering the resources of the university as a key component, we believe this technology incubator will be world-class. It will be a major force in economic development in the region,” SUNY Fredonia President Dennis L. Hefner said.

The university hired Jeffrey Corcoran as director of the incubator in April. A business consultant, Mr. Corcoran is the former executive director of the Schenectady County Community Business Center in Schenectady, N.Y.

To pay for the SUNY Fredonia Technology Incubator, New York State pledged $4.7 million in bonded funds. An additional $605,000 to support programming came in grant monies from the New York State Foundation for Science, Technology, and Innovation (NYSTAR). Meanwhile, Chautauqua County sources have stepped forward with local funding: the City of Dunkirk, the county Industrial Development Agency, and the Northern Chautauqua County Community Foundation.

ChautauquaWorks has been contracted by NYSTAR to be a partner in entrepreneurial training.

Invited to speak at the ribbon-cutting in recognition of the roles they played in bringing the project to a success were State Senator Catharine M. Young, Assemblyman William L. Parment, and Assemblyman Joe Giglio. Other speakers were Chautauqua County Executive Gregory J. Edwards and Dunkirk Mayor Richard L. Frey.

Introduced at the ribbon-cutting ceremony was Jon Brennan, president and CEO of adXit, the first tenant to claim residency in the incubator. An online marketing, learning, and web integration firm, adXit plans to use innovative means to leverage information technology to benefit its client businesses. “The company's vision is to be the leading provider of information and knowledge through its mission of giving people only what they want, how and when they want it, through superior information technologies and processes,” Mr. Brennan said.

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